'I don't want to be a 100-metre sprinter'
Kingsley Coman casually strolled to the training ground in Doha, but the impression was deceptive. The Frenchman is unstoppable on the pitch. The 21-year-old talked to fcbayern.com about his sprints. The winger, who extended his contract with FC Bayern through June 2023 shortly before Christmas, also talked about life in Germany, his Carribean roots and a few important "details."
Kingsley Coman interviewed
Kingsley, do you know how fast you are over 100 metres?
Coman: No, that's never been measured. You usually sprint only 30 to 40 metres in football.
Are you interested in sprint races like 100 metres?
Of course, everybody likes that. But I don't want to be a 100-metre sprinter myself. I do like to run fast, but only with the ball. And 100 metres are quite long. (laughing)
Did you inherit your pace?
My father was a fast runner too when he played football. My brother is fast too, but that's because of his technique. So you can say I inherited my pace.
Did you train to become faster and faster?
No. I worked on my coordination and running style, not the pace as such. I just have it.
Your parents are from Guadeloupe, an insular region in the Carribean. How much of the Carribean is in you?
100 percent. My father, my mother, my grandparents, my whole family are from Guadeloupe. By the way, many people from Guadeloupe run very fast. Anthony Martial [Manchester United player] for example. I think we from Guadeloupe have it in our genes.
And how much of the Carribean is in your daily life?
I'm the only one in my family who was born in France. I didn't grow up in Guadeloupe, I only go there on holiday. But there's a lot of the Carribean in my life, the music, the food. And I don't like it when it's cold, even though I grew up in Paris and am used to cold temperatures. Cold weather and snow just aren't my thing. It's perfect for me here in Doha.
You've been living in Germany for two and a half years now. How much do you feel at ease?
I've felt very much at ease from my first day in Germany. The people are very respectful there. If they want to take a photo with you they ask politely. I like that.
Was there any aspect of living in Germany that surprised you?
That virtually everybody speaks English well. That wasn't the case in France or Italy, where I lived for one year. It was an advantage in my first year in Munich.
How is your German?
I understand it quite well, and I can talk to my team-mates. I recently gave my first whole interview in German. But I keep working on it. The language isn't easy.
Things are going better and better for you at FC Bayern, in terms of football too. Are you satisfied with your first half of the season?
I think I turned in some pretty decent displays. But I also know that I can play much better. I'll work on it in the second half.
You were sidelined with injury again and again in the last few seasons. You were mostly fit in the first half of this season. Is there a particular reason for it?
Footballers always have years with more and years with fewer injuries. Luck plays a role too. But I do everything I can in my private life to stay fit, perhaps more than in the previous years.
What do you mean?
I pay attention to my diet for example. I haven't been drinking carbonated drinks for a long time now. Besides, I eat a lot more vegetables now. One meal per day consists of salad or other vegetables. I make sure to sleep a bit in the afternoon. These are small details but they ensure I'm in top form in terms of my body.
How did you become aware of these details?
It's always been important to me that I live professionally. But I've realised I have to pay more attention to what I do off the pitch to attain the highest level with my explosive play.
What would you like to perfect on the pitch?
Finishes, both the shot and the final pass. I often succeed at initiating good moves but I have to finish them better. I have to stay clamer then.
Jupp Heynckes said he gave you a little tip to improve your crosses.
It was about the moment before I cross into the box, when I'm at pace. The coach told me to slow down a little. And it's worked quite well so far. I'll keep working on it.